New DAB Switch-on in U.K. Adds 1.8M Potential Listeners

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New DAB Switch-on in U.K. Adds 1.8M Potential Listeners

Feb 14, 2013 4:46 PM, By Doug Irwin, CPBE DRB

Bletchley Park, UK - Feb 14, 2013 - The new DAB radio transmitters for Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, and Buckinghamshire are now on the air, meaning 1.8 million listeners in the area can receive local DAB stations for the first time. The largest local DAB switch-on in the U.K. enables local listeners to listen to Heart, Capital FM, Gold, MK FM, Connect FM and BBC Three Counties Radio.

Capital FM and MKFM are available for the first time in the area, and the reception of Gold will be much improved, as previously it has only been available on medium wave. This improvement in local digital coverage is part of a major government and radio industry investment in building local digital radio coverage across the U.K. The government has said it will make a decision on radio switchover later in 2013.

The four new transmitters at Sandy Heath, Epping Green, Zouches Farm and Bow Brickhill take local digital radio coverage from zero to 67.7 percent of households in the three counties: Luton, Milton Keynes and Aylesbury. The transmitters at Sandy Heath, Zouches Farm and Bow Brickhill were switched on as well, and Epping Green will follow later in February 2013. Local road coverage is also improved, adding more than 1,200km of roads in the area to local DAB coverage for the first time, equivalent to 81.5 percent of major roads in the area.

Currently, 42 percent of homes across the U.K. have a DAB radio and according to GfK, a cumulative total of 16 million digital radio sets have been sold to date in the UK, including DAB radios and Internet radios.

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